James Naismith (born Almonte, Ontario, Canada, 1861; died Lawrence, Kansas, November 28, 1939) invented basketball in 1891. He was given the task of designing a game that could keep track and field athletes in shape and be played indoors during the cold winter. He created the first hoop from a peach basket, and the first basketball was actually a soccer ball. Children can read more about the original rules of the game at: Basketball Rules. Children could also read John Coy’s Hoop Genius: How a Desperate Teacher and a Rowdy Gym Class Invented Basketball.
Adolphe Sax (born Dinant, Belgium, 1814; died Paris, France, February 7, 1894) invented the saxophone and all its relatives. He became famous and wealthy. Children could watch and hear a saxophone and a HUGE saxophone being played at: Saxophone. Is the saxophone a woodwind instrument or a brass instrument?
John Philip Sousa (born Washington, DC, 1854; died Reading, Pennsylvania, March 6, 1932) was a band conductor and a composer. He wrote, among other works, “The Stars and Stripes Forever.” Children can visit a website devoted to his life at: Sousa. Here you can view a timeline of his life, hear a rendition of “The Stars and Stripes Forever,” and marvel at the range of his band music, songs, and operettas.